There is no one way to develop a website. In fact, the process of website development can be quite complex, with many different steps and stages that need to be completed in order for a website to go live. Depending on the size and scope of the project, as well as the team involved in the web development process, that timeline can vary greatly.
At its most basic, though, the process of developing a website can be broken down into 7 steps. This website development checklist will take you from the initial idea for your website all the way through to launching it live on the internet.
What is the Website Development Process?
The website development life cycle is the process of creating a website. From start to finish, it involves planning, designing, building, and testing the website.
The steps in the web design process can be broadly divided into four categories:
- Planning: This is the stage where you develop an idea for a website and figure out what its purpose will be. You’ll also need to determine who your target audience is and what type of content they’ll be looking for.
- Design: In this stage, you’ll take the plans and ideas from the previous stage and turn them into a visual design. This will include creating a website layout, choosing colors and typography, and developing any branding elements that will be used on the site.
- Development: Once the design is complete, it’s time to start building the website. This involves coding the front-end and back-end of the site, as well as developing any features or functionality that will be used on the site.
- Testing: Before launching the website, it’s important to test it to ensure that everything is working properly. This includes testing the design, functionality, and performance of the site.
Now that you understand the basics of the website development process, let’s take a more detailed look at each of the steps involved.
1. Research and Planning
The first step in any website development project is research and planning. This is where you determine the purpose and goals of the website, as well as who the target audience will be. This information will help to guide the rest of the development process, so it’s important to take the time to do it right.
While researching and planning, make sure to:
- Choose a domain name for your website: The domain name is the URL people will use to access your website. It’s important to choose a name that is easy to remember and pronounce, as well as something that accurately reflects the content of your site.
- Find hosting for your website: In order for your website to be accessible on the internet, you’ll need to find a hosting provider. This is a company that will provide space on their servers for your website, as well as the necessary tools and resources to keep it running.
- Decide on the content management system of your website: Once you know who your audience is, you can start planning out the content of your site. This could be anything from articles and blog posts to product descriptions and photos.
- Create a sitemap: A sitemap is a map of all the pages and content on your website. This will help you to organize everything in a way that makes sense and ensures that all the important information is easy to find.
After you’ve done your research and planning, it’s time to start designing your website. This is where you’ll create the look and feel of the site, as well as how all of the different elements will work together.
During the design phase, you’ll need to:
- Choose a color scheme for your website: The colors you use on your website can have a big impact on how visitors perceive it. Make sure to choose a scheme that is consistent with the overall tone and message of your site.
- Decide on a layout for your website: The layout is the way that all of the different elements on your page are arranged. This includes things like the navigation menu, the sidebars, and the content area.
- Create wireframes for your website: Wireframes are like blueprints for your website. They help you to plan out the structure and layout of each page before you start creating the actual visuals.
- Choose fonts for your website: The fonts you use on your website can also have an impact on how visitors perceive it. Choose something that is easy to read and that reflects the overall tone of your site.
- Find or create images for your website: Images can help to make your website more visually appealing and help to break up the text. Make sure to choose high-quality images that are relevant to the content of your site.
- Create a favicon for your website: A favicon is a small icon that appears in the browser tab crafted by web designers when someone visits your website. It’s a good idea to create one that is consistent with the overall design of your site.
After you’ve designed your website, it’s time to move on to the next step.
The custom web development phase is where you’ll actually start building the website. This includes coding the front-end (the part of the site that visitors see and interact with) as well as the back-end (the part that runs behind the scenes).
During the development phase, you’ll need to:
- Choose a platform for your website: There are many different platforms available for developing websites. Some of the most popular options include WordPress, Drupal, and Joomla.
- Install or create a theme for your website: A theme is a collection of files that determine the look and feel of your site. You can either install a pre-made theme or create one yourself.
- Add content to your website: Once you have the basic structure of your site in place, you can start adding content. This could be anything from articles and blog posts to product descriptions and photos.
- Create or install plugins for your website: Plugins are small pieces of software that add additional functionality to your site. There are thousands of different plugins available, so make sure to choose ones that are relevant to the needs of your website.
After you’ve developed your website, it’s time for testing.
Testing is an important part of the web design process. It helps to ensure that your site is functioning properly and that there are no errors.
During the testing phase, you’ll need to:
- Test the functionality of your website: Make sure that all of the different elements on your site are working properly. This includes things like the contact form, the search function, and the social media buttons.
- Test for compatibility: Ensure that your site is compatible with all major browsers (Chrome, Firefox, Safari, etc.) as well as mobile devices.
- Check for broken links: Broken links can be frustrating for visitors and can damage your reputation. Use a tool like Screaming Frog to check for any broken links on your site.
- Run a speed test: A slow website can be a major turnoff for visitors. Use a tool like Pingdom to check the loading times of your pages and make sure they’re all up to snuff.
Once you’ve completed testing, it’s time to launch your site.
The launch phase is where you make your site live for the world to see. This includes transferring your site to a web hosting provider and registering your domain name.
During the launch phase, you’ll need to:
- Choose a web hosting provider: There are many different web hosting providers available. Do some research and choose one that is reliable and has a good reputation.
- Transfer your site to the web host: Once you’ve chosen a provider, you’ll need to transfer your site’s files from your computer to the server. This can usually be done via FTP (File Transfer Protocol).
- Register your domain name: Your domain name is what people will type into their browser to visit your site. Choose something that is short, easy to remember, and relevant to your business.
Promoting your website is an important part of making it successful. There are many different ways to promote your site, including SEO (search engine optimization), social media marketing, and content marketing.
During the promotion phase, you’ll need to:
- Optimize your site for search engines: This includes things like adding relevant keywords to your content and improving your site’s backlink profile.
- Promote your site on social media: Create social media accounts for your business and start sharing your content with your followers.
- Create compelling content: Write articles, blog posts, or create videos that will interest your target audience.
By following these steps, you can develop a successful website that will help you achieve your business goals.
Once your site is up and running, you’ll need to keep it maintained. This includes things like updating your software, backing up your data, and monitoring your traffic. By regularly maintaining your site, you can ensure that it remains healthy and continues to meet the needs of your business.
What to Consider When Planning Your Website
There are a few important things to keep in mind when planning your website. Here are a few factors to consider:
1. Your audience
Who will you be targeting with your website? What are their needs and wants? What type of content will appeal to them? This is an important factor to consider when planning your site.
2. Your budget
How much money do you have to spend on developing and launching your website? This will help you determine which features you can afford to include.
3. Your goals
What are your goals for your website? What do you want it to achieve? Once you know your goals, you can start planning how to achieve them.
4. Your timeline
How much time do you have to develop and launch your website? This will help you determine which features are essential and which can be put on the backburner.
5. Your resources
Do you have the necessary resources to develop and launch your website? This includes things like time, money, and skills. If you don’t have the necessary resources, you may need to outsource some of the work.
Now that you know what to consider when planning your website, it’s time to start developing your site.
Why You Should Use a Website Development Company
There are many benefits to using a website development company. Here are a few reasons why you should consider using one:
1. They have the necessary skills and experience
Website development is a complex process that requires a certain level of skill and experience. By using a development team that specializes in website development, you can be sure that your site will be developed correctly.
2. They can save you time
Developing a website takes a lot of time and effort. If you don’t have the time to do it yourself, then hiring a web developer can save you a lot of time and hassle.
3. They can save you money
Hiring a company to develop your website can actually save you money in the long run. This is because they can often get discounts on hosting and other services that you would need to purchase yourself.
4. They can help you achieve your goals
A good website development company will work with you to understand your goals and help you achieve them. They can help you create a site that is optimized for your target audience and help you promote it effectively.
5. They can provide support
If you run into any problems with your website, a good development company will be there to help you solve them. They can also provide ongoing support to ensure that your site remains up and running smoothly.
Looking for a Web Development Company for Your Online Business Needs?
If you’re in need of a web development company that can help you achieve your online business goals, then THg TECH is a perfect choice. We have over 10 years of experience in website development and we specialize in creating effective websites that meet the needs of our clients. Contact us today to learn more about our services and how we can help you take your business to the next level.